NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Surfing icon Laird Hamilton offers inspiration to anyone who wants to elevate their ordinary, landlocked lives to do extraordinary things.
“When Laird Hamilton surfs, you must watch. When he speaks, I listen. And when he writes a book, I’m damn sure gonna read it. Twice.”—Eddie Vedder, Grammy Award–winning lead vocalist of Pearl Jam
Millions of us increasingly seek happiness in fads and self-help books, reaching upward every day toward some enlightened state that we wish to attain. Laird Hamilton is more intent on looking inward and appreciating the brilliant creatures we already are. In Liferider, Laird uses five key pillars—Death & Fear, Heart, Body, Soul, and Everything Is Connected—to illustrate his unique worldview and life practices.
This is Laird Hamilton in his own words—raw, honest, and unvarnished—on topics he has rarely explored before. Based on extensive interviews and conversations between Laird and his coauthor, Julian Borra, with additional insights from Laird’s wife, pro-volleyball player Gabby Reece, Liferider takes on human resilience, relationships, business, technology, risk-taking, and the importance of respecting the natural world, all through the lens of Laird’s extraordinary life both in and beyond the ocean.
Praise for Liferider
“Laird is a hero, if you want him to be. That’s up to your perception. He challenges himself, and he challenges those around him. He shows us that the deeper we puncture into life, the more vibrant the colors get. The Laird Hamilton I know—real, faulty, moody, deeply loving, and communal—comes through on every page of Liferider.”—Josh Brolin, Award-Winning Actor
“Laird Hamilton is a true individualist unafraid to carve his own path. These thoughtful mediations offer a unique window — illuminating and inspiring — into one of America's great innovators.”—Rory Kennedy, Documentary Filmmaker
Surfer Hamilton (Take Every Wave) offers simplistic and shop-worn advice in this self-help manual that reads like an infomercial for his Liferider philosophy, which is based on five pillars: death & fear, heart, body, soul, and connectivity. Individuals need to experience fear, Hamilton believes, to understand serenity completely; hanging in the space between life and death in surfing, for example allows them to face such fear ("Fear is about respect. Fear leads to informed action"). Regarding soul, Hamilton posits that trust and reciprocity involve listening and learning and, in turn, learning fosters growth in one's soul as well as their body. Tying his concepts together in the chapter "Everything Is Connected," Hamilton encourages individuals to engage with the world around them, eat well, and develop compassion for others. Laird concludes with the tired suggestion that people should live life to its fullest and offers rudimentary adages ("everything is connected"; "try something new"; "our heart is connected to our feelings"). Even Laird's fans will be left wishing for a more focused, profound book.